Thankful for Safety: Tips for a Safe Thanksgiving Holiday

At Arbill, we are thankful for the opportunity to help keep your employees safe, so that everyone can go home to their families at the end of each and every day. It is with this commitment to safety in mind, that we want to provide some tips to ensure everyone gets through the Thanksgiving holiday safely.

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1) Burns

For those who cook, make sure to take the proper precautions when preparing your feast, to avoid burns. This includes:

  • Avoid wearing baggy clothing that could catch fire.
  • Turn all of the handles of the pots and pans on the stove inward so no one can walk by the stove and accidentally knock over a pot, scalding themselves or someone nearby.
  • Keep children away from hot food or liquids as the steam or splash can cause serious burns. If something happens follow this guide to treat a burn.

2) Cooking Fires

According to the U.S. Fire Administration there are more than 4,000 home cooking fires on Thanksgiving each year. That is double the number of home cooking fires on an average day. A common cooking fire is known as a grease fire and happens when cooking oil becomes too hot. To avoid grease or other cooking fires follow the tips below from the Red Cross:

  • Never leave the stove unattended - if you have to leave the kitchen turn off the stove
  • Check the food regularly
  • Use a timer as a reminder that the stove or oven is on
  • Keep children and pets away from the cooking area
  • Keep anything that can catch fire - pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, and towels or curtains - away from the stove, oven or any other appliance in the kitchen that generates heat
  • Clean cooking surfaces on a regular basis to prevent grease buildup
  • Consider purchasing a fire extinguisher to keep in the kitchen
  • Always check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving the home to make sure all stoves, ovens and small appliances are turned off
  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button

If a grease fire does happen, follow the steps below to put it out:

  • Cover the flames with a metal lid or cookie sheet and leave the cover on until it has cooled
  • Turn off the heat source
  • If it's small and manageable, pour baking soda or salt on it to smother the fire
  • As a last resort, spray the fire with a Class B dry chemical fire extinguisher
  • Do not try to extinguish the fire with water
  • Do not attempt to move the pot or pan outside
  • Do not use flour, baking powder or other cooking powders that resemble baking soda or salt - they have a different chemical makeup and will make it worse

3) Cuts

Cooking Thanksgiving dinner includes using knives, which can lead to accidental cuts. Before beginning dinner, make sure all your knives are sharp. You need to use more force when using a dull knife, which increases the chances of the blades slipping and cutting you. When chopping vegetables, slice downward and away from your body while keeping your fingers away from the blade. Keep all knives away from counter edges where they might fall and injure someone. Don't try to multitask while cutting. If you're distracted, you're more likely to cut yourself. For more information on cuts click here.

4) Choking

If a loved one is choking and can't breathe or speak, call 911, then give him/her the Heimlich maneuver. The Heimlich maneuver consists of standing behind the choking person, wrapping your arms around him and thrusting your fist upward into the abdomen, just above his belly button. To avoid choking, chew your food thoroughly and don't talk and chew at the same time. 

5) Food Poisoning

One of the biggest reasons your guests could get sick is if you improperly handle raw meat, or under cooked meat comes in contact with vegetables or other food that's already been cooked. If you're cooking in a cramped kitchen, make sure to thoroughly wash your utensils between uses with hot, soapy water, as hot as you can get it. These tips will help protect your guests and avoid food poisoning.

6) Travel Safety

Food and food preparation are not the only dangers during Thanksgiving. Travel, especially driving during high volume travel days present a number of hazards. If your plans include driving make sure to:

  • Check the weather along your route and plan for travel around storms that may be coming
  • Use your seat belt and make sure no one is drinking and driving
  • Follow the rules of the road and observe the speed limit
  • Use caution in work zones
  • Don't follow other vehicles too closely
  • Clean your headlights, taillights, signal lights and windows to help you see, especially at night

Arbill, is always thankful for our employees, customers and suppliers.  This year we are especially thankful that we are safe and that we are in a great position to help keep you safer every day. We know you are thankful for your employees. Please pass this blog on to your employees so that they can protect their families throughout the holidays and return to the workplace safely.

For more safety information visit our safety resources page.

Have a Safe and Happy Thanksgiving!